Veteran’s Day

It has become a hollow ritual to celebrate Veteran’s Day. For politicians it becomes a PR opportunity, for merchants it is another pretext for a “sale”, and for the vast majority of Americans it is nothing more than a day off of work and a passing thought about the men and women who have served. That’s the problem with how we, as a Nation, treat those very few Americans who risk the ultimate sacrifice in the Armed Services: they are just a passing thought once a year.
Since the draft was abolished the burden of sacrifices have fallen onto a very few, and the burden is greater than ever. The average soldier or Marine is now deployed in a combat zone in two years longer than most soldiers in WWII spent in 5 years. In one deployment in Afghanistan, an Air Force Rescue Helicopter crew will fly more combat missions than any pilot during all of WWII. The burden of constant deployments takes a toll on their families too. The suicide rate and homelessness among returning Veterans is nearly twice that of the general population, the divorce rate is even higher.
Another consequence of abolishing the draft is that very few of our elected representatives in Congress or the White House have any appreciation for what it means to go to War. Is it any wonder then, why they are so willing to commit our troops to Harm’s Way so often and for so long? Is it any wonder that even as they demand more and more from fewer and fewer, they are seeking to take away their benefits so that the rich can keep more of their money? They have no sense of sacrifice, let alone shared sacrifice.
Our Country has a long history of neglecting, even abusing, veterans from the Revolutionary war to the Bonus Army of WWI to Viet Nam Vets, but the Republicans in Congress today are a whole different breed of contemptables. Republicans are holding up Bills that would provide tax incentives for employers to hire veterans (the unemployment rate among veterans is higher than the general population), cost of living increases in pay, and increases in funding for education and medical benefits for veterans.
If you really want to honor veterans this Veteran’s Day, then take a moment to write your Representatives in Congress and demand that they pass legislation to provide what we OWE to veterans.

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One Response to Veteran’s Day

  1. InYourFaceNewYorker says:

    Agreed, but I think it’s disgusting how much money the US spends on the military and how many ridiculous wars it starts. WWII was a war that had to be fought. But the Gulf Wars are a joke. Republicans love starting wars and then spew out the, “We’re fighting for our freedom!” schlock. And the sheeple eat it up and beg for more.

    J.

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